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Linguistic Vitality Test

A Linguistic Vitality Test (LVT) was developed and run by Margaret Florey and Michael Ewing and members of the Maluku Research Team.

The test consists of three tasks:

  1. Task 1 is designed to test receptive proficiency in the target language. It is a lexical recognition task consisting of 53 test items in 5 photo sets. No productive language skills are necessary at this stage. The photo sets can be downloaded here.
  2. Task 2 is designed to test productive proficiency in the target language by translating 75 sentences from Ambonese Malay to the target language. The translation sentences can be downloaded here.
  3. Task 3 is designed to assess more creative proficiency at the discourse level in the target language. The list of discourse stimuli photos can be downloaded here.

The LVT was run in four language sites in Maluku, eastern Indonesia.

  • Lohiasapalewa village, Seram Island: Alune language
  • Rutah village, Seram Island: Kouro (Amahei) language
  • Allang village, Ambon Island: Allang-Larike-Wakasihu language
  • Tulehu village, Ambon Island: Souw Amana Teru (Tulehu) language

Florey, Margaret. 2007. Building tools for assessing linguistic diversity International Conference on Austronesian Endangered Language Documentation (Providence University, Taiwan) describes the test procedure and results.

More recently, the LVT has been refined by Romola Rassool and applied to her research on Sri Lanka Malay. Rassool's test materials can be downloaded here:

  1. Task 1 lexical recognition test
  2. Task 2 translation task
  3. Task 3 discourse task